Monday, May 7, 2018

Phnom Penh '94-'95

Cambodia was nice during this time frame , and guns were allowed, but you couldn't take them into bars, so there was always a desk when you first came in to check your guns. All the goodies in life were cheap and available.

I used to go to Martini's in Phnom Penh which was out of this world. It opened around 10 at night until four. Great snacks, food, booze, indoor, outdoor, music, dancing. I met some Army guys there who were enlisted attached to the Embassy, and they had been trained in the North Vietnamese dialect which I found strange, but never could get to the bottom of it.



After the GIs left Saigon I returned to Southeast Asia as a reporter for Army Times. For a while I lived in a rooftop apartment on Jawaharlal Nehru Street in Phnom Penh with Steve Hedder, a young stringer for Time, and his Khmer wife Davi. With us were the twins, pretty, playful girls of sixteen perhaps who spoke reasonable English. They were the people with soft hands that Pol Pot would kill. 

*At night the smell of charcoal and *flower trees drifted from neighboring roofs and people murmured in Khmer. Reporters--mostly stringers--lay on the roofs in a fog of gin and Nembutal and listened to the rockets whistle in from the swamps. When the KR took over, Steve and Davi got out. The twins didn't. I don't know how they died. 

I will be told I have a bad attitude. You bet I do.

*How well I remember.  Beautiful white flowers.

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